Having a baby in Spain

Updated 2021-07-30 09:43

Are you an expat thinking about having your baby in Spain? You may feel it daunting to give birth in a foreign country, but Spain has an excellent and world-renowned healthcare system with highly trained medical personnel. As an expat, you have the option to go to a public or private hospital.


Note that European citizens with EHIC cards (the European Health Insurance Card) are not covered for having a baby. Therefore it is a good idea to sort out your Spanish health insurance ahead of your move to Spain.

Giving birth within the national healthcare system

If you are a legal resident in Spain paying your monthly social security contributions, you are entitled to public healthcare. If you opt to have your baby in a Spanish public hospital, one will typically be assigned to you. However, if you go into labour when you're away from the area, you can go into any public hospital.

During your pregnancy, you will get ultrasounds and medical check-ups.

Giving birth with private healthcare

If you have private healthcare, you may prefer to pay for a private hospital. In this situation, you can choose the hospital you want to be under. You will receive regular check-ups and ultrasounds and can expect shorter wait times for results and appointments. You will have your own room or a suite in the private hospital, unlike the public system, where you will most likely share a room.

If you do not speak Spanish, you should hire a translator who can accompany you to the hospital for check-ups and when the baby is born.

Good to know:

Home pregnancy kits are available over the counter in Spanish pharmacies.

Registering your newborn baby

You will have to register the birth of your baby within ten days at the local civil registry office (Registro Civil). This can be extended to 30 days if there is a good cause. Registration includes:

  • The name of your baby
  • The date, time and location of the birth
  • Gender of your baby
  • The parents when the relationship is legally recognised
  • The time of registration

When you register your newborn, you must bring with you:

  • Medical delivery report from the hospital
  • The NIE (foreigner's identification number) of the parents
  • Translated marriage certificate or family book

If a child is born outside of marriage:

Both parents will need to attend the registry office and provide:

  • The medical delivery report provided by the hospital
  • The NIE documents of both the mother and the father
  • Details of the mother's marital status. If the mother was previously married, the legal presumption of paternity needs to be removed by presenting a marriage certificate and the divorce decree. In the case of a separation, two witnesses must accompany the mother to the registry office.

Good to know:

Spain is a very bureaucratic country so make sure you're fully prepared with all the documents you will need. If the baby is yet to be born, have your marriage certificate translated in advance so you are not rushing around after the birth.

Spanish birth certificate

There are several types of birth certificates in Spain issued by the Registrar of the Civil Registry. They include:

  • An ordinary birth certificate in Spanish
  • An international or multilingual birth certificate
  • A bilingual birth certificate
  • A certification with a digital stamp from the Department of Registers and Notaries

Good to know:

|Here are a few pregnancy-related Spanish words used during and after pregnancy:

Dar a luz - to give birth. The literal and flowery translation is 'to give a light.'

Contracciones - contractions

Inducción al parto - labour induction

Ecografia - ultrasound

Fecha del parto - due date

Paritorio ? labour/delivery room

Useful links:

Registering a birth at the Civil Registry in Spain: Government website

Birth Certificates: Ministry of Justice

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.